March 8, 2020 1:32:41 am
Two strains of bird flu were detected in two poultry farms in Kerala’s Kozhikode district on Saturday, Animal Husbandry Department officials said.
The officials said H5 and H7 strains, which fall under Type-A influenza, have been found at the farms. Dr R. Jayachandran, Chief Investigator at the Animal Husbandry Department’s Disease Investigation Unit, said: “Chances of it infecting humans is very rare. Infection from bird to human would happen only if there is mutation of the gene. So far we haven’t noticed any mutation.”
Suspicion of a bird flu infection arose after a large number of chicken deaths at the poultry farms over the last one week. The confirmation came after tests at the High Security Animal Disease Laboratory in Bhopal.
State Forest and Animal Husbandry Minister P K Raju said rapid response teams have been formed to prevent the spread of the influenza.
“All personal protective equipment in Kerala will be moved to Kozhikode. Steps have been taken to purchase 5,000 such equipment kits. A one-km radius of the affected region will be declared as an infected zone,” he said.
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